PHT Q&A Celebrating 100 Episodes!

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Coming from the listeners of the podcast, Brodie answers the following questions:

  1. How do you recommend exercises and the number of reps for different age groups?
  2. I spent a year rehabbing PHT on my right hamstring, but now my left hamstring flared up! How common is this and what can I do?
  3. What is the best way to treat PHT if it has been going on for years and doctors mis-diagnosed it for something else?
  4. Do you ever recommend conventional deadlifts as a rehab exercise for PHT or are Romanian deadlifts always going to be the best variation?
  5. How do you know it’s time to enter the maintenance phase of your rehab?

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Conventional Deadlifts vs. Romanian Deadlifts for Proximal Hamstring Tendinopathy

Jennifer brings up an important question regarding the choice between conventional deadlifts and Romanian deadlifts as rehab exercises for proximal hamstring tendinopathy (PHT). Let’s delve into the key differences and considerations.

Understanding the Exercises

  1. Conventional Deadlifts: In a conventional deadlift, you start with the barbell on the ground. You bend at your hips and knees to grasp the bar, and then you lift it with a straight back and extend your hips to a fully upright position.
  2. Romanian Deadlifts: Romanian deadlifts, on the other hand, start with the barbell already held in your hands at hip level or slightly below. You hinge at your hips, keeping your knees slightly bent, and lower the barbell while maintaining a neutral spine. Then, you return to the upright position by extending your hips.

Which One Is Better for PHT Rehabilitation?

The choice between conventional and Romanian deadlifts largely depends on individual factors and the stage of your PHT rehabilitation. Here’s how each exercise can be beneficial:

  • Conventional Deadlifts: These exercises provide a full-body workout and can help strengthen your glutes, hamstrings, lower back, and core. If you’re at a stage in your rehab where you have developed sufficient strength and stability, conventional deadlifts can be a valuable addition. However, they can be more demanding on your lower back and may require careful monitoring.
  • Romanian Deadlifts: Romanian deadlifts are often favored in PHT rehab because they target the hamstring muscles while putting less stress on the lower back. They are excellent for eccentric strengthening, which is crucial for tendon health. If you’re in the early to mid-stages of your rehab or have experienced lower back discomfort with conventional deadlifts, Romanian deadlifts may be a safer and more targeted choice.

Tailoring Your Rehabilitation

Ultimately, the best exercise for PHT rehabilitation varies from person to person. Here’s a general guideline to consider:

  1. Assessment: Consult with a physiotherapist or sports medicine specialist to assess your current condition, strength, and any limitations. They can help determine which exercise is more suitable for your specific needs.
  2. Progression: Begin with lower weights and higher repetitions to build a foundation of strength and improve technique. Gradually increase the weight as you progress. Both conventional and Romanian deadlifts can be modified to accommodate your abilities.
  3. Monitoring: Pay close attention to how your body responds to the exercises. If you experience discomfort, pain, or increased symptoms, it’s essential to modify your approach or consult with a healthcare professional.
  4. Variation: Your rehabilitation program may include a mix of exercises to target different aspects of PHT. In addition to deadlift variations, other exercises like squats, lunges, and bridges can also contribute to your overall recovery.

In conclusion, the choice between conventional and Romanian deadlifts should be based on your individual circumstances and guided by healthcare professionals who can assess your condition and provide tailored recommendations. Both exercises can be valuable tools in your PHT rehab journey when used appropriately and progressively. Remember that patience, consistency, and proper technique are key to successful rehabilitation.